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Black Sheep Bikes welds Custom Ti One-Piece Bar-Stem Combos

black sheep bikes custom titanium drop bar one piece design brace clark bar bag
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James Bleakley of Black Sheep Bikes has been busying himself with the creation of more custom titanium componentry, focusing most recently on the cockpit. For those not familiar with Bleakley’s work, it’s pertinent to mention that he is a lauded custom frame builder, highly admired by those in the hand-built bicycle community, particularly in Colorado where he began his (so far) 30-year career and where it continues to play out. Best known for his custom titanium framesets with beautiful, functional curved tubing, James has also been known to weld up forks and handlebars, all to his customers’ exacting geometrical requirements.

black sheep bikes bare metal ti one piece drop bars various brace designs

Here, we take a look at his most recent custom creation; the Black Sheep Titanium One-Piece Drop Bar-Stem Combo.

All photos courtesy of Josh Hicks.

Black Sheep Bikes Titanium One-Piece Bar-Stem Combos

black sheep one piece titanium drop bar with shallow brace

Almost everything about Black Sheep Bikes’ latest Ti handlebar offering is customizable, from the width at the tops, the width at the drops, reach, rise, run, as well as the angle of the drops relative to the ground. The only aspect not customizable is the bend in the hooks and their centerline radius. A drop of 128mm is standard, but adding flare reduces the effective drop.

james bleakley black sheep bike custom titanium handlebar
To describe the amount of flare you want at the drops, you can specify either the widths at the tops and the width at the drops, or just the width at the tops along with a value for flare or out-sweep.

From a purely functional point of view, it’s the front brace or loop that catches our attention. James says this aspect isn’t necessary from a structural standpoint, but it is highly recommended as it offers the rider sufficient real estate for the mounting of a GPS computer, phone or light, but probably not more than one of those at any one time unless you have something terribly fancy.

black sheep bikes custom ti bar stem combo weld at steerer tube clamp
Black Sheep Bikes is offering these custom titanium one-piece bar-stem combo in both 1 & 1/8” threadless and 1” threadless options.

James currently offers three main types of brace to connect the left and right sides of the one-piece bar-stem, but is open to considering alternate designs should his customers present something viable. The shallow brace is the most common style, but the longer, forward loop that is angled slightly upwards offers more space for more mounts.

black sheep bikes custom titanium drop bar one piece design brace clark bar bag
Weight ranges from 590g to over 650g, depending on the width and brace style.

There is also the Black Sheep Clark Bar Brace, a one-piece bar-stem combo designed specifically to accomodate a Clark Bar within the central region, as well as three or more mounts. It has the same shape at the hooks but shallower radius bends in the rise/run portion to allow for the bigger bar bag. Incidentally, the Clark Bar Bag has capacity for up to three beers.

james bleakley black sheep bikes

You can learn more about James Bleakley and Black Sheep Bikes here in our interview, where he tells us all about how he got into frame building, and how he has helped foster a growing community of custom frame builders in and around Boulder, Colorado.

Pricing & Availability

As of now, the cost for a Black Sheep Bikes custom titanium one-piece bar-stem combo is $700 USD but that’s subject to change as material pricing fluctuates.

black sheep one piece bar stem combo forward brace carries mounts


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Eggs Benedict
Eggs Benedict
1 year ago


1 year ago

This bar would look soooo good on a Salsa Fargo Ti

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